#AMATYC 5: Math Boot Camp


Andreana Grimaldo will speak about a program to quickly review courses to save students time and money if they have mastered the content before. HFCC has tried these before and we have had trouble getting sufficient enrollment. I hope to hear how this college managed and perhaps adapt the idea to HFCC.

I see that during a pilot that Quinsigamond College included materials and lunch for the students. They also did not charge for the course. Because of the grant used for the pilot half of the 20 students had to have a learning disability. They included an assistant who was a tutor and not a teacher.

Here is the curriculum:
Monday: Whole Numbers
Tuesday: Multiply and Divide Fractions
Wednesday: Add and Subtract Fractions
Thursday: Decimals and Percents
Friday: Review and Retake the Placement Exam
Students were required to be there 9-1. An hour before and an hour after there were opportunities for independent work. There is a packet with a detailed schedule and with sample activities. I was too late to get it but, my colleague at HFCC has one. (I just realized he was here when he asked a question.)

A computer component was included. The specific product used was MyMathTest. This way if students were not successful in retaking at least they gained familiarity with the software used in the developmental course.

After the pilot they shortened the time to 9-12. After food students no longer had focus. They go back on forth on a fee for the class. Without a fee folks don’t value it and sometimes don’t show up.

They will start an algebra boot camp. They are considering making the first week of many courses like a one room school house followed by placement adjustment.

While my original question is still partially unanswered it was interesting to see how another College has done this. It appears low cost or free trumps access to financial aid for a one-credit class. I will have to see if the administration wants to give away a few hours of instruction to get students moved further along on their program. I guess the question is just moved along to whether free boot camp will cause more students to reach their goals. I suppose it could be a retention initiative where we give away instruction and measure whether it helps student completion (and indirectly the College bottom line) for a couple semesters and then decide whether to continue.


On an unrelated note, there is a party store at 6th Street and Heche that has cheap soda and snacks a block from the Hilton. Be aware that the full diversity of America is on display on 6th street in the early afternoon if you go, however.

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